MCALLEN, Texas – A former campus police officer from the Donna Independent School District will spend almost 11 years in prison for helping a Gulf Cartel-connected gang steal drug loads. The former cop used his uniform and duty vehicle to carry out traffic stops to create the appearance of drug seizures.
This week, 40-year-old Juan Fernando Mata, went before U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez, who sentenced him to 130 months in prison, information provided to Breitbart News by the U.S. Attorney’s Office revealed. Mata previously pleaded guilty to one count of drug trafficking conspiracy in January.
According to prosecutors, Mata used his position to help a cartel-connected gang called Los Mickys steal drugs. In one example, Mata pulled over one vehicle in January 2016 and another in May 2017, to help cover up the theft of nine kilograms of cocaine and approximately 400 pounds of marijuana. Prior to sentencing, Donna Mayor Rick Morales and various employees from Donna ISD sent letters asking for leniency from the court.
At the time of the sentencing, Judge Alvares spoke out about the letters, stating her concern with officials viewing Mata as a role model. Alvarez said Mata showed poor principles when he swore to uphold the law–only to disregard it.
The gang has deep ties to Mexico’s Gulf Cartel and local law enforcement who helped steal drug loads through staged seizures or home invasions. Earlier this year, former Hidalgo County Court #6 Bailiff Oscar De La Cruz pleaded guilty for his role with Los Mickeys.
Los Mickys is led by Jose Miguel “El Mickey” Montemayor and two brothers, Macrin “El Filtro” Marin Cerda and Miguel “El Tigre” Marin Cerda. The group maintains ties to the Gulf Cartel but can operate independently. The cell is suspected in numerous armed home invasions in South Texas. The group was linked to a June 2017 break-in in McAllen where they raided the wrong house and held an innocent family at gunpoint. The gang was also tied to a 2010 case in Edinburg that led to a high-speed chase when a gunman crashed into another vehicle–killing three innocent victims.
Ildefonso Ortiz is an award-winning journalist with Breitbart Texas. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Brandon Darby and senior Breitbart management. You can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook. He can be contacted at Iortiz@breitbart.com.
Brandon Darby is the managing director and editor-in-chief of Breitbart Texas. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Ildefonso Ortiz and senior Breitbart management. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He can be contacted